Court judgment on Ayodhya: The guilty must be punished!

On September 23, the Supreme Court stayed the delivery of the Ayodhya judgment by the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court, which was scheduled for September 24. The Court cited "disagreement between the two judges" as the reason for the stay, as one of the judges was reported to be in favour of conciliation.

For several weeks before this, much tension was created and panic spread among people in Ayodhya as well as all over the country, about the possible consequences of the September 24 judgment and how it might lead to communal violence. Top functionaries of the government, including the Prime Minister and the Home Minister made much publicised appeals to "maintain communal harmony". These together with the daily speculation and hype created by the media only served to heighten the tension. Paramilitary forces were deployed in large numbers in "sensitive" areas and Section 144 imposed all over Ayodhya, in the name of "preventing communal tension", but in fact assisting in the build-up of tension before the verdict.

The September 24 judgment of the high court was to decide on who would be granted ownership of the disputed Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi site at Ayodhya, in the light of whether there was a temple at the disputed site, prior to 1538; whether the suit filed by the Babri Committee in 1961 is barred by limitation, and whether Muslims perfected their title through adverse possession.

The entire country was witness to the criminal manner in which the Congress party and the BJP organised the demolition of the Babri Masjid on December 6, 1992 and the spate of state organised communal massacres that followed, killing thousands of people. The Liberhan Commission which was set up by the government on December 16, 1992, to investigate into the circumstances leading to the demolition of the Babri Masjid, submitted its report in 2009, after 17 years and 48 extensions granted by various governments. It has not yet been placed before the Parliament and is gathering dust. The report only underscored the criminal role of the Congress and BJP in organising the demolition and the massacres that followed.

People have been demanding for the last 18 years, that those guilty of organising the communal massacres in 1992-93 should be tried and punished. In 1992, right after the demolition of the Babri Masjid, the CGPI raised the demand that criminal parties such as the Congress and BJP should be banned from political power and not allowed to determine the fate and future of our people. This demand found resonance among people all over the country and brought home the realisation that as long as these criminal political parties such as the Congress and the BJP are allowed to run this country, state organised communal violence will continue to wreak havoc with the lives of our people time and again. The events since then have only reaffirmed this.

It is indeed ironic that the courts of this land are not interested in addressing this demand of our people and have done nothing to punish the guilty, even though their identity is well known by now and well entrenched in the minds of our people. This is the issue that the rulers of our country, whether led by the Congress or the BJP, want to cover up and do not wish to address. Instead, it is made out that the most important issue is who should own the disputed piece of land, an issue that the ordinary people of Ayodhya and all over the country are least concerned about and have nothing to gain from, whatever be the court verdict.

In fact the experience of the last 18 years has clearly shown that keeping the dispute on the Babri Masjid- Ram Janmabhoomi issue alive and reopening it every now and then has helped the ruling class. It has helped both the Congress and the BJP to keep the weapon of state organised communal violence handy, to be unleashed to divide and devastate the people whenever their political interests dictate them to do so. This can be clearly seen once again in the way communal tension was systematically built up by all the agencies of the state, including the media, prior to the September 24 court judgment.

When the culprit, the judge and the hangman are one and the same, it cannot be expected that the courts of this land will ever punish the guilty or give justice to the victims of state organised communal violence. The people of our country have to rise up, throw out these criminal political parties and the ruling class whose interests they represent from political power and take political power into our own hands. Only then can we use our political power to punish the guilty and put an end to state organised communal violence once and for all.


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Babri Masjid    unity    punishment    political games    guilty    divide and rule    destruction    demand    courts    communal violence    Oct 1-15 2010    Political-Economy    Communalism     History    Rights    


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